Dorothy had it right. There’s no place like home. I’ve been back in Ohio for about a week now, and I happened to get home right around the start of a late spring cold snap. I am so enjoying being cold. And wearing my favorite sweatshirt again. And drinking hot drinks to warm up a bit. And so on. I’m also relishing being back to my studio (despite the fact that nothing got done while I was away. That’s one of the downfalls of self-employment, although I was sincerely hoping that I had a house elf or two lurking that would “make things happen” while I was away from my glass…)
Part of the reason I’m so glad to be back though, is that Florida was a journey of epic proportions, and I’m not just talking about the mileage. Several people have expressed wonderment and disbelief at such an undertaking (although heading to Florida with a small dog and a trailer in tow seems kind of par for the course in this artist’s life I’ve chosen.) No, Florida had some “life lessons” to teach me. Sometimes life approaches you like a little old grandmotherly type who dispenses bus-stop wisdom while waiting for her Greyhound to arrive. And sometimes life’s lessons come at you with all the timidity of a broken bottle across the jugular in a bar brawl. Florida was definitely more of a “bar brawl” kind of journey. But I learned a lot about life, I learned a lot about me, and I learned a lot about what sort of person I want to be. To totally paraphrase my friend Elliot (mostly because I can’t remember sitting here how she puts it, exactly,) “No learning is ever wasted”… or something like that. (Sorry, Ellie, if I butchered it.) My job = my art and sometimes = my life, but it doesn’t have to be the sum total of it. So, like the rubber ball I referenced a few posts back, I think it’s time to drop a few things around here that can be dropped.
Like my blog.
I realized is that I’ve been blogging pretty regularly on the advice of someone who is a much better salesperson than I. (Hey, I just make the glass, and while I am getting better at marketing my own items, it’s never been something that I rock at.)
It occurred to me in Florida that one of the nice things about being there was that I didn’t have to blog, since I had pretty much let me loyal 15 readers or so (hey, I said I learned a lot about myself. I didn’t say I’d lay off the self-deprecating humor) know that my blog would be bare during my Florida trip. Don’t get me wrong, I like blogging, but in more of a “if the mood fits” kind of a way, and I had strayed from that because I wanted to try blogging long enough and regularly enough to see if the numbers contributed to my overall sales and well being of my business.
And, well, they don’t.
I had the time in Florida to do the math, and even with my quirky math, the numbers didn’t lie. My blog shows up nowhere in my stats. I repeat, nowhere. And I had more hits in the past three months on my etsy store than any other months I could find. I realize that it’s due mostly to being featured in several knitting podcasts. (Thanks again to HighFiberDiet, 2KnitLitChicks, and WexfordKnits) In fact, I have had so much business in stitch markers recently that I am having trouble keeping up, drives to Florida and back notwithstanding.
So my blog is one of the balls I’m going to let bounce on the pavement for awhile. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not giving this up entirely… I just plan to go back to blogging irregularly and more in the fashion of “when the mood strikes”.
Oh, and the use of Betty Boop in the title? Well, it made for a nice alliteration. And since stitch markers seem to be what the universe is handing me lately, I said yes when got invited to merchant at the local World Wide Knit in Public Day event. I’ve done shows for (eegads!) 7-8 years now, and I got out of art shows in general because my setup is a pain in the patootie. There is nothing, I repeat, nothing, like spending 2.5 hours setting up (or more) and 2.5 hours breaking down (or more) for a weekend long event. And that’s if it doesn’t rain. So I pitched the idea of being a portable merchant, selling stitch markers and knitting accessories from a tray that I’ll wear, much like the cigarette girls in old-fashioned bars. Of course my only reference for such an idea comes straight from the movie “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”, where Betty Boop has a cameo.
I think I’ll forgo the garter and short skirt, though. Know your audience, and all that.
So yeah, I think I covered it all… Betty Boop, Bouncing Balls and Bad Math. I’ll catch up with you the next time the blog ball bounces my way.